Night walk

night

WHILE MAKING supper salads and awaiting my child bride’s return from the gym, I stepped outside about 7:30 into the cool night air to look at the stars.

And to feel that cool night air.

Looking back into where I had been standing at the chopping board just moments before, I said to myself, my, that looks nice. So I got the camera.

I make the best salads in Mexico. That’s not saying much because Mexicans don’t know how to make salads. A little iceberg lettuce topped with a tomato and onion slice, squeeze of lime juice, and there you have it. A Mexican excuse for a salad.

My sister-in-law once ate a salad at a Gringo’s house here. The next day she commented that it was full of raw vegetables — didn’t care for it much.

I not only make the best salad in Mexico, I make better salads than you’ll usually find above the Rio Bravo too. About the only exception is the Cafe Express chain in Texas.

After a few minutes standing outside, I went back into the kitchen to finish chopping and slicing. Then I heard the front gate grind open, and I knew I was alone no more.

It was salad time.

30 thoughts on “Night walk”

  1. I, like you, brought many things to Mexico that the Mexican could not or did not do as I was used to. You have to be self sufficient if you want some comforts from home. I made my own Italian sausage, grew basil & oregano from seed as well as sunflowers. One of our Mexican neighbors came by one day and was amazed by the 5- to 6-foot-tall yellow beauties. When I told her to cut a bunch and take them home for her vase, she was thrilled. I guess sunflowers are not widely known in Mexico.

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    1. Mike: Come to think of it, I don’t see sunflowers often, if at all.

      Actually, I did not bring much down here when I moved, far less than most Gringos who bring trucks and trailers jammed to the ceilings like Okies fleeing the Dust Bowl toward California. Recall that I initially came on a Delta flight with two suitcases. True, I did buy a little car and go up to my mother’s condo storeroom in Atlanta and bring some other things back here, stuff I had left in her storeroom.

      It was mostly cooking gear.

      When the upscale Walmart store called Superama arrived at the nearby capital city I was able to find more exotic ingredients for my salads.

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  2. I love that a salad can accompany a meal or be a meal. Besides the usual ingredients I enjoy one with avocado, cheese, or fresh fruit added.

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        1. Nothing secret at all. I use the usual stuff, just lots of it. I top it off with balsamic vinegar and olive oil. The salads are accompanied by jalapeƱo cornbread that my wife makes. Sometimes garlic bread. It varies. Yum.

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    1. SeƱor Calypso: My salads are out of this world. Yes, I am quite methodical (you are perceptive to notice). It’s not so much that all the pieces are of equal size, it’s that the two salads are equal, mine and hers. I don’t show favoritism. The only difference is that I put three, sometimes four (depending on my mood), pieces of canned mandarin orange in mine. Being canned, my wife says they taste like medicine, so she begs off. I like them. I am a simple man with humble tastes.

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  3. I think Mexican salads have made some progress since I started going to Mexico in earnest — 2006. But in general, yes, they can be rather insipid. I eat a lot of salad here. It’s about the healthiest thing you can possibly eat.

    So you’ll probably live a lot longer than you expect.

    Saludos,

    Kim G
    Boston, MA
    Where lately we’ve been enjoying various salads purchased at the Armenian markets in Watertown.

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    1. Kim: Being a high-falootin’ guy who frequents snazzy joints in Mexico City, I imagine you might find the occasional acceptable salad. But down here with the common people, where I hang out, encountering a decent salad in a restaurant is well-nigh impossible.

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      1. We have had great salads in such semi high-falootin’ snazzy restaurants such as Macelleria Roma, in Mexico City; among which the grilled endive salad and the beet and goat cheese salads are outstanding. Endive salad picture: http://tinyurl.com/lxq6ouy

        But at home, our salads are much simpler.

        Saludos,
        Don Cuevas

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        1. Don Cuevas: Yeah, you and Kim gadabout in the high end of Mexico City, so I imagine good salads can be found. Bet they are expensive too. But out in the real Mexico, here in the provinces, forget about it.

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  4. Lately a couple of salad bar restaurants have opened here, I haven’t tried any of them as I make good salads myself also and Roy could care less if he ever saw a salad.

    One time I took a raw veggie and dip tray to our class party. One fellow couldn’t figure it out, he asked me if they were cooked and was astounded that they weren’t. He kind of shook his head over the silliness of it all; but then after watching others dig into it and survive, he also tried it. His face was so funny to watch. He later came over to me and told me he had never eaten that before and he really liked it and was going to try it at home. Kind of funny.

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      1. Oh yes, for sure he was Mexican. Sorry. I never thought to mention that as I don’t really think of it. The majority of the people I see socially are Mexican. This was at my art class at the local Casa de la Cultura. I am the token northerner there.

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  5. I tend to go through salads in spurts. I have several I like (none with lettuce which I do not) and make them for dinner when I eat in. And there is the rub. I usually go out each evening to socialize at dinner time. And Melaque is no better at putting together salads than is your home town. There are some rather bad imitation Caesar salads with bottled dressing. But they are not for me.

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    1. Steve: No lettuce? Lettuce is the foundation of a real salad, as everyone knows. Otherwise, you just gotta bowl of raw veggies. There is no grace and style to that. You go out to socialize in the evening? So make your salads for lunch. That’s basically what I do because the Mexican dining schedule is reversed from yours. Light meal at night. Big meal during the day.

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  6. It sounds like a nice night. I can envision you standing making salad for yourself and your child bride. Nice little piece. Only once, I was seriously ill in Honduras from food poisoning. The culprit was salad. I tend to shy from salad since then, but occasionally I indulge in the wonderful salads at a place near my house, Pollo Supremo which has a wonderful light avocado dressing with a salad worthy of eating out.

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    1. Laurie: Nice little piece indeed, which is exactly what I intended it to be. Thanks for noticing. As for shying away from salad, I recommend making it yourself at home. You can make it better, and you can disinfect it better.

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      1. Truthfully, I have never been a fan of lettuce. I eat it sparingly. Lately, I roast pans of vegetables with a sprinkle of Kosher salt, olive oil, and parmesan. Then i eat it with pasta, saving the old leftovers for the next day to be eaten alongside something else. Better than salad.

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  7. Dee and I used to enjoy going to Souper Salad together. She would always sneak an extra chocolate chip muffin into her purse.

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